Magwood's on Shem Creek sold by bank, owners vow to stay in business
By Stacy Jacobsonsjacobson@abcnews4.com
MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) -- Magwood's Seafood has been forced to sell its property, but the family says they are determined to overcome yet another obstacle to stay in business.
Magwood's Seafood has been etched in to local history since 1972. Memories of C.A. Magwood, Jr. are plastered all around the Shem Creek business.
"A lot of history," said Wayne Magwood as he looked around at the old photos of his dad.
It's his father's memory that makes Wayne sentimental. Wayne and his brother Scott lost the property last week, after the bank took over and sold it in a short sale.
"I feel like I failed my father. That's what hurts me the most," Wayne Magwood said.
Since their father died in 2001, staying financially afloat has been a struggle for the brothers, they said. Magwood's Seafood has only one shrimp boat now. Sales never stopped; they said they sell about $20,000 worth of shrimp each week, and could sell more if they had a larger supply. But the money ran dry, as big houses and restaurants moved in around them on Shem Creek.
"Taxes went up and property taxes went sky high. We had to roll back five years of property taxes," Wayne Magwood said.
Two years ago, the Magwoods said the bank dropped their loan. The seafood company owners couldn't pay it out. Since then, they'd been looking for a buyer, until the bank sold the property on a short sale last Friday.
"It was so far in debt that they had to take it all," Wayne Magwood said. "It's like losing my dad all over again. One of the saddest days of my life."
But the Magwoods believe the winds of fortune will once again blow in their favor. The new landowner is local and determined to upgrade the property, they said. And they've agreed with the new owner to stay as a sort of renters for at least two years. After that, they said they'd find a way to keep shrimping even if they didn't have property left.
"It's going to be a sad day when Magwood's disappears," Wayne Magwood said. "There are a lot of people here who support us and we appreciate their support through the years. Just please come down and continue to support us. We'll sell right off the boat, whatever we have to do. We have to do something to keep surviving."
They hoped the post marking Magwood Lane would never become a memorial.